Date of Award:

1-1-1980

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Advisor/Chair:

Craig Peery

Abstract

Children's popularity is of concern in this study and the effect on the child's sociometric status after a series on empathy teaching has been presented. An objective of the study was to see if children in the isolated or rejected sociometric status would change to popular and amiable status after being taught empathy skills. Another objective was to find an intervention program which would teach children empathy skills.

in order to measure children's abilities in sociometric choice, a sociometric technique devised by Dr. Craig Peery at Utah State University was used. The empathy tool used to measure children's empathy skills was the Interpersonal Awareness Test from Carnegie-Mellon University by Helen Borke. A modified version of the Feshback and Roe slides was the empathy teaching tool. The children were given pretest and post-test on both the sociometric measurement and the empathy skill measurement.

Kindergarten children from three schools in the Weber County School District were tested. They were all 5 to 6 years of age and were divided into control and experimental groups, 66 in the control and 81 in the experimental.

The results of the study indicated little evidence that an intervention program of two months made a significant difference. It was found, however, that children of both control and experimental groups do increase scoring in an empathy test which measures pre and post testing. It was also found that children do change sociometric status to a greater extent in the experimental group than in the control and that popular children do score higher on the empathy test with isolate children scoring lowest. All children did increase in empathy scoring but not at a significant difference of .05.

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